Ladies and gentlemen out there in podcast land, Thomas Inskeep and I would like to welcome you to the FIFTH episode of the Jheri Curl Chronicles podcast. Yes, folks, we’re taking you down memory lane for a discussion about songs that hit #1 on Billboard Magazine’s Hot R&B Singles chart in the ’80s.
If you’ve missed an installment, never fear. You can find them by clicking on the link for each respective episode.
In this episode, we’re firmly planted in the year 1981. The five smashes we discuss during this episode are:
Chaka Khan’s “What Cha Gonna Do For Me”
Rick James’ “Give It To Me Baby”
Frankie Smith’s “Double Dutch Bus”
“Champagne” King’s “I’m In Love”
Diana Ross & Lionel Richie’s “Endless Love”
And here are some show notes/secondary topics brought up as these songs are discussed.
-The origins of “What Cha Gonna Do For Me”, which was written by Hamish Stuart (of the Average White Band) and California singer-songwriter Ned Doheny, whose name we have lots of trouble pronouncing. Thankfully, the Chaka video above demonstrates how to pronounce “Doheny” properly.
–This Chaka soundalike single by Tata Vega, also written by Ned Doheny.
-Chaka’s longtime producer, the esteemed and continental Arif Mardin.
-“Give It To Me Baby”‘s kinship with the title track to the biggest selling album in history.
-Rick’s excellent (and scandalous) autobiography, co-written with the amazing David Ritz.
-Was “Double Dutch Bus” an early example of a “viral” hit like “Watch Me Whip” and “Teach Me How To Dougie”? Also, why did Raven Symone cover it?
-Kashif and Morrie Brown’s assistance with Evelyn King’s transformation from teenage disco queen to mature artist, and “I’m in Love”‘s status as one of the first all-synthesized songs to top the R&B charts.
-Our girl Janet knew what time it was when she sampled “I’m In Love” back in 2004.
-Diana’s parting gift to Motown with “Endless Love”, which she recorded and released on her longtime label, even though she’d just signed with another record company.
-Did you know that the movie Endless Love marked the movie debut of Tom Cruise?
-…and of course, we bring up Luther and Mariah’s karaoke cover.
A special shout out to our opening and closing songs this episode: Slave’s “Watching You” and Billy Ocean’s “Nights (Feel Like Getting Down)”. They didn’t top the charts, but they damn sure should have!
There are a variety of ways you can enjoy this podcast. You can listen in the player below, download the mp3 file directly to your computer or device, stream the show on Liberated Syndication, or you can subscribe to the Blerd Radio family of podcasts on ye olde iTunes. Enjoy!